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Enhancing your business through resource efficiency

TRANSFORMING SUSTAINABILITY INTO NEW BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES (UKRAINE)

On November 30, 2021 the third and final within a series of live workshops “Transforming Sustainability into New Business Opportunities. Enhance Ukrainian small and medium enterprises’ capacity to access sustainable public procurement and broaden their markets” was held under the project “Enhancing sustainable public procurement (SPP) for the regional transition to inclusive green economy in the Eastern Europe, Caucuses and Central Asia (EECCA)” funded by the United Nations Development Account. This time the workshop targeted Ukrainian audience.

The seminar was initially designed to inform its participants about the importance of SPP for the target countries within the Eastern Europe, Caucuses and Central Asia (EECCA), as well as help master the potential of enterprises capable of supplying products and services that meet sustainability criteria. Such a powerful potential as public procurement encourages product manufacturers to innovate, produce environmentally friendly products and use the energy of renewables. The experience of countries that have implemented green public procurement shows that the introduction of environmental criteria can lead to such positive results as: reducing air pollution, removing the most harmful substances from production, increasing the percentage of waste recycling, reducing the amount of waste in production, increasing the share of renewable energy, etc.

Anna Yuldashova, Deputy Director of the Public Procurement Department – Head of the Public Procurement Policy Division of the Ministry of Economy of Ukraine, opened the seminar with a welcome address. She reminded everyone present that SPP is a very complex process, because you need to prepare a lot of documents to submit your proposal and eventually win the tender by concluding a contract. “Since April 19, 2020, Ukraine has got a new version of the law on procurement. It allows customers or bidding organizers setting non-price criteria for proposal evaluation (for example, environmental criterion),” noted A.Yuldashova. With the participation of the World Bank and UNEP Ukraine has accumulated enough useful information on SPP, using non-price criteria, the relevant information events are held in order to disseminate SPP knowledge. Anna Yuldashova explained the application procedure, compliance with the criteria, as well as appeals in case of rejection due to non-compliance with certain requirements. She also assured that the Ministry of Economy of Ukraine supports the SPP concept in every way, so the Ukrainian businesses will have more opportunities to use such tools when participating in tenders.

Farid Yaker, Programme Officer, Economy Division, UNEP, took the floor second. He noted, “Ukraine is an important country for us (for UNEP) because it is a leader in SPP implementation. Under the leadership of the Ministry of Economy and thanks to the active involvement of a number of NGOs, such as Living Planet, as well as the implementation of the ecolabelling, Ukraine is already joining the global trend to achieve the SDGs (target 12.7 on sustainable public procurement).” UNEP has been working in Ukraine since 2013 and very much appreciates the support of the Ukrainian government to implement SPP. Ukraine will soon join the group of countries that fully comply with the SDG clause on public procurement. Around the world, 33 nations are already actively working to implement SPP, which are responsible for 69% of global GDP and already meet the target. “SPP is a critical tool to help solve the three major crises humanity faces today – the environmental, climate and biodiversity crises. If even a small fraction of SPP – somewhere between 5-10-15% – can become green, we will affect the climate crisis and protect the environment,” summarized Farid Yacker.

In the core part of the seminar Johannes Fresner, the international technical expert of the RECP Centre, made a presentation “SPP as a modern approach to efficient production and consumption”, in which he elaborated on the SPP services, products and criteria and, importantly, focused on the prospects of public procurement in the future. A very important component of Mr. Fresner’s speech was information about the circular economy practices and their benefits. The speaker also spoke about the environmental management system, how SPP provides enterprises with an attractive position in the market and demonstrated examples of eco-labelling.

Galyna Buzan, Executive Secretary of the National Technical Committee for Standardization Technical Committee 82 “Environmental Protection”, State Ecological Academy of Postgraduate Education and Management of the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Natural Resources of Ukraine intercepted the baton of speeches. First of all, she reminded everyone that she has been working in the SPP implementation team since 2016, although the whole procurement story began back in 2014, when the EaPGREEN project was launched in Ukraine (and now the EU4Environemnt project “EU for Environment” as its continuation). EaPGREEN formed the basis for further SPP development in Ukraine. The first sustainable procurements were paint products, detergents, and thermal insulation materials. The Law on Public Procurement has been changed several times in Ukraine. Article 23 of the Public Procurement Law refers to technical specifications, markings, certificates, test reports and other means of conformity, while Article 29 considers and evaluates bids based on price, non-price and product life cycle cost criteria. The order of the Cabinet of Ministers of December 4, 2019 refers to the use of industrial waste (slag in particular) in road construction. The speaker also introduced the scheme of material recycling system according to DSTU ISO 14021, proposed a number of ecological building materials and products in Ukraine, told about the implementation of electronic fields of tender documents in the PROZORO system. To conclude her speech, Galyna Buzan reminded about the EU4Environemnt project, its key objective and its component implementation in Ukraine – “Circular Economy and New Growth Opportunities”.

Ivan Omelchuk, the RECP Centre’s expert, concluded the main block of the seminar with his presentation “Enhancing SME’s SPP readiness: possibilities, applications, and procedures”. His presentation was one of the key ones among others. He provided the results of a survey of manufacturing companies about their attitudes towards SPM, the factors for selecting sustainable suppliers, the criteria for evaluating a product or a service, familiarized the audience with comprehensive information about the product life cycle and how it can be calculated, etc.

At the end of the event, Andrii Vorfolomeiev, Director, Resource Efficient and Cleaner Production Centre, offered a presentation on “Introduction to free expert advisory service to help SMEs improve their SPP readiness”. He informed about the RECP Centre in Ukraine and the assessment activities within the project “Enhancing sustainable public procurement (SPP) for the regional transition to inclusive green economy in EECCA” funded by the United Nations Development Account. The assessment will analyze various aspects of your company’s sustainability level in relation to its production processes (environmental, social and economic factors) and products (ability to meet sustainable procurement criteria) to measure the preparedness for the criteria of sustainable public procurement.

The workshop joined the representatives of SMEs, the Ministry of Economy of Ukraine, UNEP, national experts and all those interested in SDR, circular economy, resource efficient and cleaner production.

The workshop gathered together 58 participants, 67% were women.

*The workshop was carried out within the frame of the Project “Enhancing sustainable public procurement (SPP) for the regional transition to inclusive green economy in the Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia (EECCA)” funded by the United Nations Development Account.